Effectiveness of Lexapro & It’s Dosage, Side Effects

Certain medicines can interact with lexapro and may cause a serious condition known as serotonin syndrome which is a group of symptoms that may occur following the use of lexapro. Ensure that your doctor is well aware of you also take opioid medicine, stimulant medicine, medicine for depression, migraine headaches, serious infections, herbal products, Parkinson’s disease, mental illness, vomiting or prevention of nausea. Consult with your doctor in prior before you make any changes in when or how to take your medicines.

How Effective is Lexapro?

How Effective is Lexapro?

Lexapro also known as escitalopram is an antidepressant which works by serving to effectively restore serotonin (certain natural substance) in the brain which may be unbalanced in people with anxiety or depression. Escitalopram belongs to the category of drugs known as SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors)

Lexapro is useful for effective treatment of anxiety in adults. Lexapro is also used for effective treatment of major depressive disorder in adolescents who are above 12 years of age and in adults.

Important information

  • It is not advisable to take Lexapro when you are using citalopram (Celexa) or pimozide (Orap).
  • You should not use Lexapro with 14 days before or after you have used a Monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor like methylene blue injection, isocarboxazid, tranylcypromine, linezolid, rasagiline, phenelzine or selegiline.
  • During the first time intake of an antidepressant young people are certain to have suicide thoughts. Always be alert to your mood changes or symptoms. If you have any worsening or new symptoms, report to your doctor immediately.
  • Get emergency medical help immediately if you have serotonin syndrome symptoms like: hallucinations, sweating, fever, agitation, twitching, sweating, fast heart rate, shivering, nausea, lack of coordination, muscle stiffness diarrhea or vomiting.
  • For adolescents less than 12 years of age, Lexapro should not be given.

Before Taking Lexapro

In case you have citalopram (Celexa) or escitalopram allergy, you should not take Lexapro, or if you also take citalopram or pimozide.

You should not take Lexapro within 14 days before or after you have used MAO (Monoamine oxidase) inhibitor. It may lead to drug interaction that might be dangerous. MAO inhibitors include linezolid, isocarboxazid, selegiline, tranylcypromine, rasagiline and phenelzine.

To ensure Lexapro is safe to use, inform your doctor in case you have ever had:

  • Kidney or liver disease;
  • Seizures;
  • Lesser amounts of sodium in your blood;
  • High blood pressure, heart disease;
  • A stroke;
  • Blood clotting disorder or bleeding;
  • Bipolar disorder or manic depression; or
  • Suicidal thoughts or drug addiction.

During the primary intake of an antidepressant like lexapro, certain young people will have suicide thoughts. Your doctor must definitely check your progress at regular intervals. Your caregivers or your family must also be alert to your mood changes or symptoms.

If you take SSRI antidepressant such as lexapro at the time of pregnancy, you are certain to have serious problems in your lungs or other complications in your baby. Yet you might have a decline of depression when you stop the intake of your antidepressant. In case you become pregnant when using Lexapro, inform your doctor immediately. You must not stop or start using this medicine at the time of pregnancy without getting advice from your doctor.

  • There is a possibility of lexapro of harming a nursing baby through breast milk. Inform your doctor if you are breast-feeding your child.
  • For adolescents under 12 years of age, lexapro must not be given.

How Should I Take Lexapro?

You must take lexapro rightly as per doctor’s prescription. You need to follow all the directions present on your prescription label without fail. Changing of your lexapro dosage may be occasionally done by your doctor. You are not supposed to use lexapro in smaller or larger amounts or for longer period than actually recommended. Lexapro can be taken with or without food. It is good to take lexapro at the same time every day.

  • You should measure liquid medicine with the dosing syringe that is provided or medicine cup or with a special dose-measuring spoon. Ask your pharmacist for a dose-measuring cup if you do not have one.
  • It may take up a minimum period of 4 weeks before your symptoms get better. Continue using Lexapro as directed and inform your doctor if your symptoms do not get better.
  • You are likely to have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms if you stop using Lexapro suddenly. You must follow your doctor’s instructions about reducing your dosage.
  • You should always store lexapro in room temperature and away from heat and moisture.

What is the Recommended Dosage of Lexapro?

Standard Adult Dosage of Lexapro for Generalized Anxiety Disorder or GAD:

  • Initial lexapro dosage: 10 milligrams one time in a day lexapro; augment if needed after at least 1 week of treatment to 20 milligrams one time a day
  • Maintenance dosage: 10 to 20 milligrams one time per day orally
  • Maximum lexapro dosage: 20 milligrams once a day orally

In order to determine the necessity for ongoing treatment, periodical reassessment of treatment is essential. It has not been systematically studied that efficacy is obtained after 8 weeks. Lexapro is used for urgent care treatment of general anxiety disorder.

Standard Adult Dosage of Lexapro for Depression:

  • Initial lexapro dosage: 10 milligrams once a day orally; increase dose if necessary after at least 1 week of treatment to 20 milligrams one time a day
  • Maintenance dosage: 10 to 20 milligrams one time in a day orally
  • Maximum lexapro dosage: 20 milligrams once a day orally.
  • Acute or severe episodes might need many months or longer period of continued pharmacological therapy beyond the response to the acute episode.
  • Periodical reassessment of patients is needed for determining the need for maintenance treatment.
  • Lexapro is used for maintenance and acute treatment of major depressive disorder.

Standard Geriatric Dosage of Lexapro for Depression:

  • Recommended dose: 10 milligrams once a day orally
  • Use: Maintenance and acute treatment of major depressive disorder

Standard Pediatric Dosage for Depression:

  • 12 years and older:
  • Initial lexapro dosage: 10 milligrams once a day orally; increase the dosage if needed after at least 3 weeks of treatment to 20 milligrams one time in a day
  • Maintenance dosage: 10 to 20 milligrams once a day orally
  • Maximum lexapro dosage: 20 milligrams once a day orally.
  • Acute or sever episodes may necessitate quite a few months or longer period of continued pharmacological therapy beyond the response to the acute episode.
  • Periodical reassessment of patients is required in order to determine the need for maintenance treatment.
  • Use: Maintenance and acute treatment of major depressive disorder

What are the Side Effects of Lexapro?

In case you have any symptoms or signs of any allergic reaction to Lexapro like hives or skin rash, breathing difficulty, inflammation of your lips, tongue, face or throat get emergency medical help immediately.

You need to report to your doctor if you have any worsening or new symptoms like behavior or mood changes, panic attacks, sleeping trouble, anxiety, of if you feel irritable, impulsive, aggressive, hostile, restlessness, hyperactive(physical or mental), more depressed or if you have suicide thoughts or harming yourself.

Contact your doctor immediately if you have the severe side effects of lexapro:

  • Tunnel vision, blurred vision, swelling of eyes or eye pain, or viewing halos around lights;
  • Unusual risk-taking behavior, racing thoughts, feelings of extreme sadness or happiness;
  • Less amounts of sodium in the body – confusion, headache, severe weakness, slurred speech, vomiting, feeling unsteady loss of coordination; or
  • Severe nervous system reaction – high fever, fast or uneven heartbeats, very stiff muscles, confusion, sweating, tremors, feeling lightheaded- like you might pass out.
  • Get medical attention immediately if you have serotonin syndrome symptoms like: hallucinations, fever, agitation, loss of coordination, sweating, fast heart rate, shivering, twitching, muscle stiffness, vomiting, nausea or diarrhea.

Common side effects of lexapro may include:

  • Drowsiness, dizziness or weakness;
  • Feeling shaky or anxious, sweating;
  • Sleep problems or insomnia;
  • Loss of appetite, dry mouth;
  • Constipation, nausea are also side effects of lexapro;
  • Weight changes;
  • Yawning;
  • Impotence, reduced sex drive or difficulty having an orgasm.

Was this article helpful?

Yes No
×

Suggestions to Improve the Article

This article contains incorrect information.

This article does not have the information I am looking for.


I Have a Medical Question.

Ask A Doctor Now

If you are facing a medical emergency, call your local emergency services immediately, or visit the nearest ER or urgent care facility
×

Suggestions to Improve the Article

×

How Did This Article Help?

This Article Did Change My Life!


I Have a Medical Question.

Ask A Doctor Now

If you are facing a medical emergency, call your local emergency services immediately, or visit the nearest ER or urgent care facility
×

Thank you for your feedback.